This is small but floriferous shrub that attracts attention by the tenderness and brightness of its blossoms. And, as it finds out, this plant is perfect for breeding even in home conditions.
Kalanchoe kalandiva is a hybrid of Kalanchoe blossfelda. Kalandiva relates to plants-succulents and belongs to the Crassulaceae. That means that its leaves are quite large and fleshy, storing moisture. It is so easy to determine the condition of Kalanchoe by its leaves - if they are brightly green and thick enough, everything is all right; if they are still green but quite soft - so the Kalanchoe needs watering; but if the leaves are starting to yellow or blacken, that means that the shrub was “poured” and it needs nutrients.
Speaking of watering: like all succulents, it is needful to water calandiva by reasonable portions every 5-7 days as the complete drying of the ground in the flowerpot.
There is a rule for Kalanchoe kalandiva: “it's better not to pour water than to do it”. The plant also doesn’t need the spraying, because it endures dry air much better than moist one. Speaking about the dependence of the watering on seasons: fall and winter watering should be more moderate than summer one.
Despite the fact that the birthplace of Kalanchoe calandiva is Madagascar, African island, that is so far for us, the plant's quite easily adaptable to the conditions of the apartment(flat) and itfeels fine in the range of temperatures from 15 to 30 degrees during whole year. But this flower is very sun-loving because of "African roots" – so calandiva would "like" on a well lit windowsill. You should avoid the south windows, where sunlight is too aggressive for the plant – in this case the flower should be moved a little bit away from the window, so the light will be more diffused. The plant is unpretentious to soil composition (neutral soil for cacti are the best suited for it) and to the size of the pot – there's no need in often repoting the flower, it is enough to plant it once in a flowerpot with a diameter of about 15 cm.
Kalandiva has lots of small, terry flowers on stalks in bloom: the flowers can have white, yellow, orange, red, or pink shades. The period of blossoming calandiva is quite long – up to six months. Many experienced growers "regulate" the flowering period themselves to admire the flowers in the winter period.
Usually there are already flowering plants sold in stores, and those plants "refuse" to bloom next year. If you want plant to please you with flowers in future it's necessary to follow next steps: at first, carefully transplant your plant to a neutral ground using a suitable pot. Do not use the ground from the store pot during the transplanting and wash the roots under running water. Before the transplanting to the new pot you need to put 1.5-2 cm of drainage on the bottom of it or good ventilation of the roots. After the transplanting carefully remove any faded flower stalks, yellowed leaves and useless branches.
Don't be afraid to cut off too much – after flowering it is necessary to prune calandiva quite greatly because otherwise it can stretch up and the shape of the shrub will be lost. After the period of blossoming the plant has a small period of a rest, when it accumulates forces for the next blossom. After that the plant should be moved to more shaded place for a couple of months, just a small amount of light should get on it. After Kalanchoe "would be rested", replace it to the familiar place and start to feed it with fertilizer for cacti or succulents once in 3-4 weeks. During flowering Kalanchoe should be fertilized with special fertilizers for flowering plants. However you shouldn’t long or over-fertilize the plant – from miniature one it can grow into a giant.
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Kalanchoe kalandiva multiplies quite simply – with leaves or stalks. In order to get a new plant, just cut a leaf or stalk (part of a stem with several leaves) and place it into water until roots would appear. To get a quicker result of the process you can "put" the process into the wet sand. After 7-12 months you will get new independent plant. During the period of active growth of new leaves, new twigs must be pinched off to make the plant scrub not to stretch up.
The experienced growers make beautiful compositions from colorful bushes of Kalanchoe calandiva – for this you just need to plant several varieties of these plants into a wide, shallow pot.